Grain Free Fried Onion Strings. (gluten/dairy/egg free)

by Brittany on November 20, 2012

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Ladies. If you ever want your significant other to come home from work early. All you have to do is text them one of these pictures and tell them there’s a basket with their name just waiting.  Trust me. It works!

Prior to having any health issues and food restrictions I ate these darn fried things out of the can. That’s right, as if they were chips. Now, I can again enjoy them  except this time its without any guilt. Which in my mind makes them 100 times better.  Using Almond flour and a healthy fat to fry such as coconut oil- there’s no reason not to enjoy every last onion string in one sitting.  But then again- you should probably try putting them on a green bean casserole or say on top of a burger. Because thats pretty darn good too.

I modified this recipe just slighty to become grain and dairy free.  The original came from the Pioneer Woman herself. Thanks Ree!

Grain Free Fried Onion Strings

2 cups of Milk (dairy or nondairy) + 2 Tbs Lemon Juice (or vinegar)
1 large Onion (or 3 small onions) 

2 Packed Cups of Blanched Almond Flour
1/3 Cup Starch (Potato, Arrowroot or Tapioca)
1 Tbs Salt
1 Tsp Smoked Paprika ( Or Chili Powder, OR regular paprika or a mix of them all)
1/4 Tsp Black Pepper

Oil for Frying: your typical cheap frying oils will work ie. Vegetable/ Peanut.  But I recommend Coconut or Grapeseed oil.

  1. Pour the milk and lemon juice into a small casserole dish or bowl. Slice the onions as thinly as possible. Separate the rings and place into the “milk mixture. (Note: for those that can have dairy, buttermilk may be used). Place dish in fridge covered and allow the onions to soak for 1 hour.
  2. After the hour. Remove the dish from the fridge. Pour a few inches of oil into a heavy bottomed sauce pan and heat up to around 300 degrees.  Meanwhile in a clean bowl mix together the Almond Flour, Starch Salt and Spices.
  3. Once the oil is hot- pull a handful of the buttermilk onions and place it into the bowl of flour. Cover thoroughly and then place directly into the hot oil. Fry until crispy and light golden brown. Strain from oil, place on a paper towel and continue with the remaining onions until you have fried all of them.
Note: If starch is a problem for you, try using a product called Konjac Flour instead. It works similar to starch in that it will hold the breading on the onion in the hot oil. Its not cheap- but is a great product and will last you a long time as a little bit goes a long way. I use it also to make low carb gravy. I tried using it in this recipe and found I only need just barely 1/4 cup of the flour (vs. needing 1/3 cup of starch).  My onion strings using it were just a tiny bit less crispy, but still extremely delicious!
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{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

Mari Ann Lisenbe November 20, 2012 at 9:57 pm

This one, I’ve GOT to try. My own mother ordered onion rings as an appetizer the other night, and I had to sit there and watch as everyone else enjoyed them.

I have tried making them before, but ended up with a bunch of naked onions (the batter fell off). From studying your recipe, I can see several things I did wrong. THANKS!


Brittany November 20, 2012 at 10:07 pm

The starch is what makes or breaks the recipe! Without it the almond flour falls right off. Then of course the flour needs something to stick too- hence the buttermilk. If you ever feel like making bigger onion rings try dropping them into egg- then starch then egg again and then finally into the almond flour! It works great and will give you a nice thick crunchy crust!


Penniless Parenting March 12, 2013 at 8:47 am

I make this type of thing with chickpea flour. Works very well.


Megan S November 20, 2012 at 10:03 pm

I have everything on hand except enough oil for frying – I wonder how they would bake? I have once of those crisping/baking sheets that does a great job with homemade sweet potato fries (crispy on outside and soft inside). If I can try them out, I’ll let you know. Thanks!


Brittany November 20, 2012 at 10:05 pm

I’d love to hear how they turn out!
You might be able to get away with shallow frying them too in a skillet :)


bitt November 21, 2012 at 2:02 am

I wonder if baking them would work. I do a breaded eggplant with almond flour and it works ok baked. If I try I will report back! (can’t do fried stuff or too much oil right now… I know, it sucks)


Cassidy @ Cooking Gluten (& Dairy) Free November 21, 2012 at 2:52 pm

Hi Brittany!
I adapted the pioneer woman’s recipe too to be grain free! The only thing I did different from you is that I used 1 C blanched almond flour and 1 C arrowroot – Delicious!!! BTW- Your pictures are beautiful and SO much better than mine :) Thanks for such a great site and for all the great recipes.


Amanda McCullough December 28, 2012 at 4:14 am

The fried onion strings were magnificent in my green gluten & dairy free green bean casserole for Christmas this year! Thank you!!! I don’t have an issue with egg so perhaps I will try that next time to make sure the “breading” sticks really well to the onions.


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